Category Archives: Business of Writing

Still “Tearin’ Up My Heart”

You may or may not know this about me, but I started writing M/M the same way most everyone does — with fan fiction.

For two years, I wrote RPS (real person slash) about Justin Timberlake and Lance Bass from *NSYNC. I also dabbled in some strange pairings (my JC/Eminem story was really popular), but my OTP was Justin/Lance, all the way.

I’m still very much a fan, but as you can imagine, *NSYNC means a lot to me because they helped me get back to writing when I was afraid I couldn’t. After I saw what sort of readership my fan fic drew, I started writing original slash (or gay erotic romance, or M/M, take your pick) and the rest, as they say, is history.

Today *NSYNC is being honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (finally!!), and to celebrate, I want to let you know that 95% of my fan fiction is still available online, but only on my own site. If you’re interested in taking a stroll down memory lane with me and the boys, you can download the stories here.

Be warned, though — All I Ever Wanted is seriously the longest thing I’ve ever written and clocks in at over 440,000 words (and 900 pages). So that one might be a bit of a slow download.

The percentage of my fan fic that isn’t online any longer has been rewritten and re-edited and released as stories in their own right. If you want to know which of my titles used to be boy band slash, check out this page on my author site.

Writer Problem #462 — Does the ending work?

So I finally finished one of my WIPs (insert wild cheering here). I’m stuck on a title, but that’s normal for me.

What isn’t normal is that I’m unsure about the ending.

See, I wrote the story and ended it at one point, but I had a nagging feeling that there was a bit more to tell. So I wrote another ending and wonder if it’s really needed.

My beta reader says he likes the new ending, but I’m wondering what others might think.

Plotter or pantser?

Forward motion has stopped in my current WIP. My goal of writing 500 words daily has more or less gone out the window, though each day I tell myself I’m going to get back to it. As soon as … [fill in the blank].

That isn’t to say I haven’t written anything at all. My current WIP might not be moving ahead, but it’s still gaining words. When I reached the end of what I have written so far, I realized there needed to be an additional scene or two much earlier.

A year or so ago (I’m not sure when, time gets more fluid the older you get), I read a writing book that suggested you can write faster if you sit down and plot out the entire story all at once. Then, when you’re stuck on a scene or at a part of the story you’re not really all that interested in writing, you can hop around to another chapter, or skip ahead to the end, and then fill in the rest of the blanks.

Unfortunately I can’t write like that. Most of the time when I sit down to write a story, all I have are the characters, the opening scene, and maybe something farther on down the line I hope to get to eventually. I say “hope” because the scene I wanted to write when I wrote the first book in what became my Vic and Matt series doesn’t actually appear until several stories in (for those interested, it was the bulletproof scene in 7-11 that appears in The Bonds of Love).

Before I started writing regularly (and I say “writing” instead of “publishing” because I had a year-long love affair with fanfic, as some of you might remember, before I decided to begin writing what I called “original slash” at the time), I would think through an entire story before I ever put word one down on paper. And that’s probably why many of those tales sizzled out after a few chapters. The longest is 50k, but it’s only the beginning of what was supposed to be an epic fantasy story I never bothered finishing.

Why? Well, to be honest, once I thought my way through to the end, I lost interest in writing it out. The story was over for me, even if it wasn’t finished for anyone else. So I have a drawer (and several discs) full of stories that petered out, stories I’ll most likely never bother going back to again.

I don’t want that to happen now. I have several WIPs I think are good (then again, don’t we all think all our own stories are good? I mean, we have to, if we want to promote and suggest them to readers). But I still can’t let myself think too far in advance, even in a short story like the one I’m working on now.

But what started out as a quick little sex tale has sort of taken on a life of its own. And when I reached this point in the story …

Giving Jo’s neck a firm squeeze, Lee says, “Open up.”
Jo looks past the thick dick in his face to frown up at Lee. “But I thought—”
“Did I say you could speak?” Lee thrusts his hips forward, and the tip of his cock smears across Jo’s cheek.

I knew I had to go back and fill in some blanks before I could figure out where things went from here.

Though, honestly, I know where they go (obvs it’s a sex scene). Hopefully the payoff will satisfy readers better, now that there’s a bit more backstory earlier.

Still, I haven’t let myself think about what happens when the afterglow fades. So I’m really pretty much flying by the seat of my pants, the way I always do when I write. Sometimes I’m as much surprised by what happens as anyone!